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Arvind Kejriwal Once Raised His Voice Against Liquor, But… Says, Anna Hazare

“I told him many times to avoid liquor, but he made the policy for more money.” This is one of many scathing remarks by social activist Anna Hazare on the arrest of his former mentee, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, in the liquor policy case. While several opposition leaders have come out in support of Mr Kejriwal, Anna Hazare has said that the Aam Aadmi Party shouldn’t have made the liquor policy.

“I am very saddened, that a man like Arvind Kejriwal, who used to work with me and had raised his voice against liquor, today he is preparing liquor policy,” he said.

“But what can be done? Whatever happens now should happen according to the law,” the activist added.

Anna Hazare was the face of the anti-corruption movement in 2011, from which the AAP emerged. At the time, while choosing to stay out of the party — avoiding electoral politics — he gave it his “blessings”. But he has since criticised the party on several points. Mr Kejriwal and his party have avoided direct counters.

The ED’s case is that the Delhi liquor policy 2021-22 provided an exceptionally high-profit margin of 12 per cent for wholesalers and nearly 185 per cent for retailers. Of the 12 per cent, 6 per cent was to be recovered from wholesalers as kickbacks for AAP leaders, and the “South Group” allegedly gave ₹ 100 crore in advance to another accused, Vijay Nair, who was linked to the AAP.

Mr Hazare has in the past too spoken against the policy. he had written a letter to Arvind Kejriwal in 2022 expressing his “pain” over the policy.

“This is the first time I am writing to you since you became chief minister, because I am pained at recent news reports about your government’s liquor policy. Like liquor, power too intoxicates. You are intoxicated by power, it seems,” Anna Hazare had written in the letter to Mr Kejriwal.

Arvind Kejriwal will continue as the Delhi Chief Minister despite the arrest, AAP has asserted. Mr Kejriwal, sources said, will now approach a trial court against the arrest, in accordance with protocol. The Chief Minister – who spent the night at the ED’s office on Delhi’s Abdul Kalam Road – will also be produced before a special court that deals with the probe agency’s cases.

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(Source: NDTV)

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